As the scientists report in a new study in the journal NeuroImage, the brains of expert writers appeared to work differently, even before they set pen to paper. During brainstorming, the novice writers activated their visual centers. By contrast, the brains of expert writers showed more activity in regions involved in speech.
“I think both groups are using different strategies,” Dr. Lotze said. It’s possible that the novices are watching their stories like a film inside their heads, while the writers are narrating it with an inner voice.